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New Perspectives on Microsoft Project 2007: Communicating Project Information. In this tutorial you will:. Review Project 2007 reports Examine the critical path Filter tasks Format a Gantt Chart Work with the Network Diagram Analyze task constraints . Case: LAN Project.

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in this tutorial you will
In this tutorial you will:
  • Review Project 2007 reports
  • Examine the critical path
  • Filter tasks
  • Format a Gantt Chart
  • Work with the Network Diagram
  • Analyze task constraints

Presentations Created by C. Hester - Microsoft Project 2007 by Bunin

case lan project
Case: LAN Project
  • Your project has been viewed by the project manager: Emily King
    • The Finish date that Project 2007 calculated is 2 weeks later then anticipated.
    • Use Project 2007 features such as reports, filters, and custom formats to emphasize, analyze, and shorten the critical path so the project finishes earlier.

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creating reports using project 2007
Creating Reports Using Project 2007
  • Reports can communicate project information
  • Reports disseminate information
  • Use reports for project status
  • Use reports to plan a project
  • Viewing different reports will help you to analyze your current project plan in different ways.

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project 2007 reports
Project 2007 Reports

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understanding the critical path
Understanding the Critical Path
  • A critical task is a task that must be completed as scheduled in order for the project to finish as of the Finish date.
    • Any delay in a critical task could delay the project completion date.
  • The critical path is the series of critical tasks (or even a single critical task) that indicates the calculated Finish date of the project.
    • The critical path determines the earliest the project can be completed.

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understanding the critical path cont d
Understanding the Critical Path Cont’d
  • The critical path changes if tasks on the critical path are completed ahead of or behind schedule.
  • Another way to define the critical path is that it consists of those tasks having a float of zero.
    • Float, also called total slack, is the amount of time that a task can be delayed from its planned start date without delaying the project Finish date.

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understanding the critical path cont d8
Understanding the Critical Path Cont’d
    • Total slack differs from free slack. Free slack is the amount of time that a task can be delayed without delaying any successor tasks.
  • If any tasks on the critical path take longer then planned, the project completion date will slip unless corrective action is taken.
  • Viewing the Network Diagram makes it easy to see the critical path because critical tasks are automatically displayed in red.

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critical path
Critical Path

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project manager
Project Manager
  • It is very important for a project manager to have excellent skills in finding, analyzing, and communicating information about the critical path throughout the life of the project.
  • Filters, formats, and customizing the Network Diagram help the manager accomplish this.

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filtering tasks for information
Filtering Tasks for Information
  • A filter temporarily hides some of the tasks so that only those tasks that you are interested in are displayed.
  • Filters help you to focus your attention on specific aspects of the project based on different criteria.
  • Project 2007 offers many build-in filters, available using the Filter list arrow on the Formatting toolbar.
  • One of the most important filters used is “Critical” because it filters out all tasks not currently on the critical path.

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filtering tasks for information cont d
Filtering Tasks for Information Cont’d
  • Filters can be applied in any view, but each view is filtered independently of the others.
  • Other filters such as Milestones, Task Range, and Date Range can be used at any time.
  • Filters temporarily hide those tasks that do not meet the filter criteria.
  • It is also important to note that filters are only “correct” as of the moment they are applied.
  • Recommended not to make changes in filter views.

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filter list options
Filter List Options

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filters
Filters

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using the autofilter
Using the AutoFilter
  • The AutoFilter allows you to determine the filter criteria by selecting from a criteria list associated specifically with each column in the Entry table.
    • When you select AutoFilter on the Formatting Toolbar, a list arrow is displayed to the right of each field name in the Entry table.
    • You choose filter criteria for a column by clicking the list arrow in the column heading.
  • You can apply custom filters using the AutoFilter list arrows.

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autofilter
AutoFilter

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custom autofilter
Custom AutoFilter

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printing filtered view
Printing Filtered View
  • You can print any filtered view of a project.
  • Entering information such as your name, the date, perhaps a time, and filename into the header and footer sections help identify the project file on the printout.
  • This can be helpful when presenting a filtered list of tasks.

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formatting a project
Formatting a Project
  • Sometimes you want to highlight information in a project by changing the appearance of the default views. For example:
    • Change the color of certain types of task bars.
    • Change the text font size within a table.
  • Project 2007 provides many ways to format the colors, shapes, and text within each project view to help you clearly communicate your message.

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changing bar style
Changing Bar Style

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formatting a gantt chart
Formatting a Gantt Chart
  • Project 2007 applies default formatting choices such as blue for task bars and black for summary bars.
  • You can change the default options individually or by using the Gantt Chart Wizard.
  • Enhancing the appearance of certain task bars of a Gantt Chart customizes the project and helps you communicate the information to management.

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formatting a gantt chart cont d
Formatting a Gantt Chart Cont’d
  • Project 2007 has many formatting options for the Gantt Chart.
  • The key to formatting the Gantt Chart is that the final product should clearly and quickly communicate the information that is important to the project manager and management.
  • As the project progresses, you can always reformat the Gantt Chart to highlight any new important messages.

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formatted gantt chart
Formatted Gantt Chart

Presentations Created by C. Hester - Microsoft Project 2007 by Bunin

formatting an entry table
Formatting an Entry Table
  • You can click any cell within the Entry table and choose a new font, font size, font effect, or color.
  • By visually organizing the tasks, you help communicate what needs to be done in the project.
  • Formatting tasks by category changes all formatting for the specified category.
  • Formatting options are available to help you communicate project information to management as you work with Project 2007.

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text style dialog box
Text Style Dialog Box

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formatting individual items in the entry table and gantt chart
Formatting Individual Items in the Entry Table and Gantt Chart
  • Many options on the Formatting toolbar and Format menu are used for formatting individual tasks. For example:
    • Format the tasks that you have assigned to an outside contractor with an italic font.
    • Temporarily change the color of one Gantt Chart bar to highlight it for a meeting.

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individual formatting changes applied
Individual Formatting Changes Applied

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timescale
Timescale
  • The timescale can display three tiers simultaneously.
  • You may be working on a project that requires that level of detail on the timescale.
  • You can set the timescale to show all three tiers and format each one.

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timescale29
Timescale

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working with the network diagram view
Working with the Network Diagram View
  • Network Diagram most clearly identifies the dependencies (also called relationships) between the tasks, as well as, the critical path.
  • You need to be able to complete basic actions such as entering and editing tasks in any view that you use.

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the network diagram
The Network Diagram

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examining dependencies and the critical path
Examining Dependencies and the Critical Path
  • The primary purpose of the Network Diagram is to clearly illustrate the sequential progression of tasks and the critical path.
  • Project managers often use the Network Diagram view to enter and edit task dependencies.

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task dependency in network diagram view
Task Dependency in Network Diagram View

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moving tasks for printouts
Moving Tasks for Printouts
  • Network Diagram printouts can be quite wide, so you might want to move tasks in order to better arrange them for printouts.
  • If you plan to show them to your colleagues or to management, you must be organized so as to best communicate the information.

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previewing the network diagram
Previewing the Network Diagram

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shortening the critical path by using task information
Shortening the Critical Path by Using Task Information
  • Directly modifying the task information for a critical task is the easiest way to shorten the path. For example:
    • If a critical task has an initial duration of 3 days and is modified to be completed in 2 days, the critical path will automatically be reduced by 1 day.
  • You want to focus on shortening tasks with the least incremental cost.
  • Another common term used in shortening project schedules is fast tracking.

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shortening the critical path by using task information cont d
Shortening the Critical Path by Using Task Information Cont’d
  • To shorten the path only for the sake of shortening the project on paper serves no meaningful purpose — it only confuses and stresses out the project participants.
  • Strive to find ways to shorten the critical path by using techniques that can be readily accomplished once the project is started.

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shorten the critical path by modifying task information
Shorten the Critical Path by Modifying Task Information

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fast tracking
Fast Tracking
  • Fast tracking is when you perform activities in parallel that you would normally do in sequence. For example:
    • You might have planned to finish all of the analysis work before starting design, but you decide to start the design when the analysis is 75 percent complete.

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changing task durations
Changing Task Durations
  • Probably the quickest way to shorten the critical path is by directly shortening the durations of critical tasks.
  • In reality, it must be examined to determine whether the tasks can be accomplished in the shorter time frame.

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changing task dependencies
Changing Task Dependencies
  • Another common way to shorten the critical path is to examine and modify task dependencies.
  • Sometimes a Finish-to-Start (FS) dependency is created when it is not necessary.
  • Sometimes a dependency that requires less total time, such as a Start-to-Start (SS) or Finish-to-Finish (FF) dependency, would be appropriate.

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negative lag time
Negative Lag Time
  • Another technique to shorten the critical path is to add negative lag time to an existing Finish-to-Start (FS) dependency between two critical tasks.
    • Negative lag time always allows the tasks to overlap, regardless of whether the project is scheduled from a given Start or Finish date.
    • When a project is scheduled from a given Start date, negative lag time pulls the second task in the dependency backward in time.

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changing task dependencies43
Changing Task Dependencies
  • Yet another way to use dependencies to shorten the critical path is to change the dependencies type from Finish-to-Start (FS) to Finish-to-Finish (FF) or Start-to-Start (SS), in which the task durations automatically overlap.

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changing calendar and task constraints
Changing Calendar and Task Constraints
  • If you know of a task whose working time does not follow that of the Standard calendar, you should create a special calendar with the appropriate working and nonworking times and assign it to that task.
  • Another way to shorten the critical path is to analyze and eliminate unnecessary date constraints that have been applied to the tasks within your project.
  • A constraint is a restriction that you put on a task’s Start or Finish date.

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changing calendar and task constraints cont d
Changing Calendar andTask Constraints Cont’d
  • Be very careful about entering date constraints because they will definitely remove some flexibility in recalculating individual task Start and Finish dates.
  • Project 2007 places an icon in the Indicator column for any constraint other than As Soon As Possible and As Late As Possible to alert you.

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constraint types
Constraint Types

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constraint applied
Constraint Applied

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view of final project
View of Final Project

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comparison of gantt chart and network diagram view
Comparison of Gantt Chart andNetwork Diagram View

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